If Genesis isn't taken literally, who's sin did Jesus die for?

by unshackled 106 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • keyser soze
    keyser soze
    Unshackled - you are forgetting that death came to all men, "BECAUSE ALL MEN SINNED", part of Romans.

    Why do all men sin? Is it because of Adam, or is it a defect in creation? If it is the latter, than who is ultimately responsible?

  • Lion Cask
    Lion Cask

    Here's an alternative theory (I'm only allowed one more post after this one for today, so can't get into a debate about it). Let's see if you can consider it, even just a little bit.

    The Bible is a collection of writings made by men who lived at a time when the sun orbited around a flat earth and natural phenomena were regarded as portents. The collection was larger at one time, surviving as copies of copies of copies, and it was rendered down by the Roman Catholic Church many centuries after writing to represent the basic work it is today, from which various translations and interpretations have been taken and untold volumes of complimentary works have been produced. The Bible contains coda with which one may structure a principled life and it contains anomalies, contradictions and mysteries which have precipitated a spectrum of belief systems, not all of which (probably none of which) can be correct.

    Given that Jesus of Nazareth actually existed and was executed for purposes that can only be gleaned from the Bible (since there is no other reference) then it is only through an interpretation of the Bible one can understand his sacrifice. To repeat, there is no other reference, so you either believe the Bible is factual or you don't.

    If the Bible cannot be believed then you need to find another rationale for the existence and sacrifice of Jesus of Nazareth or you need to accept that he either was not what he is held to be in the hearts and minds of millions or he never existed at all.

  • poopsiecakes

    Well, the oldest written history of Alexander we have was written almost 500 years AFTER his death and that was Alexander the great !

    PSac...ummmm just so I understand - are you saying that there are no contemporary sources for Alexander the Great?

  • PSacramento
    PSac...ummmm just so I understand - are you saying that there are no contemporary sources for Alexander the Great?

    Oh no, there WERE, but I believe the oldest (reliable)surviving one was written almost 500 years after Alexander.



    For the history of Alexander the oldest surviving account is that of Diodorus of Sicily, written around 50 BC. That is three centuries after the life of Alexander. The four other major sources of our knowledge are the accounts of Quintus Curtius Rufus (written around 40 AD, four centuries after Alexander), Plutarch (written around 100 AD), Arrian (written around 140 AD, five centuries after Alexander) and Justin (written around 200 AD).
    The earliest account of Diodorus is, sadly, also one of the most confused. Arrian, Plutarch and Curtius Rufus are considered the more reliable sources, but as their accounts were composed four to five hundred years after Alexander's reign they are a far cry from an eye-witness account. They are also biased. Arrian paints an overall favorable portrait of Alexander the Great, as does Plutarch - while Curtius Rufus seems rather more obsessed with the negative aspects of Alexander's personality.

    The oldest surviving copies of the NT are dated to 300-350 AD (More or less, I am going on memory though) and are the codex sinaiticus and codex vaticanus. There are older fragments then these of course, but those codexs are pretty complete and in good condition.

  • PSacramento

    The point is that Alexander was a King, THE KING really, and yet what we have in regards to info on him is "dated" and "second hand" and this is fairly typical of ancient historic figures, heck there is no evidence that Socrates even existed outside the writings of his pupils/disciples.

  • unshackled

    Again, taking it back to reconciling evolution with christianity…

    If one accepts evolution then they know we evolved from a common simple lifeform. (the how and why of that is not yet known, but Cadellin had an interesting thread on this recently). We've learned that the building blocks of life are throughout the universe. Recently discovered were both water and amino acids on meteorites. As Carl Sagan used to say "we're star stuff". All made of the same various atoms.

    So the questions are…when and where did sin enter the scene? At one point in our evolutionary history did all humans become inherently sinful? At the australopithecus stage? Were dinosaurs sinful? Was sin always present in the building blocks of life? Wouldn't all plants, animals/humans be sinful because we all come from the same source - the basic building blocks of life? Is the universe inherently sinful?

    Again if you accept evolution and christianity you would need to answer those questions. How would one reconcile the need for a god to impregnate a woman to have a baby to atone for inherited sin? Why did that god wait some 14 billion years to come along and say "oh by the way, after all this time, turns out you're all sinful. Found a glitch in the building blocks of life and there's an error. So here, worship this guy named Jesus and we're all fixed. You too plants."

    Zero logic there. What would be a logical alternative? The bible, and the story of sin, was written by a bunch of men to guilt people into submission.

  • sabastious

    Simple answer: Jesus, a fictional character, died for another fictional character in a good novel, the Bible.


  • poopsiecakes

    Ok so you're kinda making my point there darlin. Thanks

    There WERE historical records that haven't survived but the sources used like Ptolomey and Aristobulus and other military contemporaries were quoted in later works. There is also archeological evidence of Alexander's existence and conquests. Through all of this, historians disagree on some things and there is still a lot of speculation about what kind of person he was. The same could be said for Julius Caesar who wrote his own commentaries as well as many contemporary sources who wrote about him. And there are STILL a lot of historians who disagree about how things actually went down.

    The Jesus accounts are not nearly as reliable or diverse and by far the majority of evidence of Jesus comes from the NT which is fraught with allegory, parables and such so questioning who he truly was is par for the course if you want to prove anything...and that requires putting away all preconceived notions and really examining the historical record.


    You make some intersting observations unshackled

    So the questions are…when and where did sin enter the scene? At one point in our evolutionary history did all humans become inherently sinful?

    I would also be interested to know at what point in evolution God is believed to have inserted a soul into each human, thus distinguishing humans from the animal kingdom?

    It was this very issue that brought the Christian church into opposition with Darwin.

  • PSacramento

    As coincedence has it, I just made a thread about Evolution, Theology and Christianity in which Theologian George Murphy adresses such issues.

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